I made a promise and today I am finally doing it. With this one I start the series of posts about corsets I promised to do. In this one I am going to talk, in a general way, about the anatomy of a corset.
As you already know I am open to questions and suggestions so don’t hesitate to write to me if you have any doubt or if you want to know something more. And of course, please tell me what you want to see or know about corsets.
As to start I wanted to do a very simple classification within corsets, it has no major importance for this post since both types have exactly the same structure, but it may be important for the upcoming posts.
There are two types of corset according to how much they cover.
- Under-bust: They cover from the hips to just under the bust.
- Over-bust: They cover the whole torso, including the bust.
All this been clarified it’s time to start with the main point of the post, the anatomy of almost every single corset which I’ll divide into three parts.
- Busk: It is a special closure made of metal loops that fit with studs. Both are hooked on special steel bones and have become the most common closure of modern corsets. There are several forms of closure, there are even corsets that don’t have front closure, but this is the most popular due to its simplicity and ease of use.
- Bones: Thin slats responsible of maintaining the vertical tension of the corset. Contrary to what is believed the bones are not responsible for creating the shape, but to maintain it. These can be smooth or spiral and are usually made of steel. There are also plastic bones, but they deform much more easily.
- Grommets: Metal rings that strengthen the holes through which the cord is threaded in the back closure.
- Binding: Strip of fabric that covers the upper and lower edges of the corset.
- Panels: Each piece of fabric, cut to a specific shape to create fit. Most corsets commonly have six panels on each side of the body.
- Bone casing: Additional layer of fabric that is sewn between panels to create the bone channel.
- Bone channel: The path between the layers of fabric that holds each bone in place.
- Waist tape: A resistant and non-decorative tape that reinforces the waist to minimize stretch of the fabric.
The lacing area:
- Lacing gap: Gap between the edges of the central rear panels. It is what allows flexibility in the adjustment of the corset.
- Modesty panel: It is an extra piece of fabric that is in the lacing gap behind the laces. It serves to hide the skin fold that is generated by tightening the corset.
Finally I just have to say that corsets are usually tied by stretching the laces so that the knot is at waist height. In this way we can tighten until we achieve the desired shape.
I hope everything was clear enough and that you’ve found it curious. If someone is interested I can make a video showing each part on one of my corsets.